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Arsenal v Chelsea – Premier League
Rob Holding has been handed a new contract at Arsenal after cementing his place in the first team this season and turning in some impressive performances at centre-back.
The 25-year-old was already under contract until 2023, but The Athletic reports that he has penned a new long-term deal with the Gunners.
It is a quite remarkable turnaround for the Englishman, who looked set to leave the club over the summer, with a loan move to Newcastle United mooted.
However, the former Bolton Wanderers man chose to stay and fight for his place at the Emirates and the decision has paid off.
Holding has made 14 Premier League appearances so far this season, and three more in other competitions, establishing himself as a first choice centre-back.
There is no shortage of competition in the centre of defence at Arsenal, but Holding has earned Mikel Arteta’s trust, where the likes of Shkodran Mustafi, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and David Luiz have failed to do so.
Holding has been at Arsenal since July 2016 when he signed from Bolton in a low-key deal worth around £2m. He has struggled with injuries since then, and competition for places, meaning he has been limited to 96 appearances for the club in all competitions.
The defender had established himself in the first team in late 2018 before rupturing his ACL which kept him out from December 2018 till September 2019.
Fitness concerns appear to be behind him now, though, having made more Premier League appearances already this season than in any of his previous four with the Gunners.